Allowing things to sit

“Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.”

Rainer Maria Rilke, Beauty and Terror

I was intrigued reading over these words, just this morning  as I sat watching my faithful pup breathe out a most-contented sigh : It’s as if in these short moments, simple flecks of time, he is able to surrender fully to all of life and that which life brings us. And just by breathing in…he settles in.

A friend joked the other day that he and his dog both suffered the troubles of a “5 minute memory”…as if, this was such a very bad thing. But, perhaps that is the trick of it, isn’t it? To allow things to sit, for only just a little bit — and then bid them farewell as they slip away into another day.

No feeling is ever final.Too often, we find ourselves struggling to hold onto happiness — fearing it forever lost in the wash of emotions that life carries with it. And we are left to wonder, how we may embrace the absolute richness of this life when we ourselves appear to weaken. How do we create a happiness that is big enough to experience all of these moments — the fear, the pain, the heartache and sorrow, and that will also allow for continuous gratitude, as well?

It’s this very impermanence that creates a space of ‘fully living.’  So, my dears, instead of worrying so very much over ‘what might have been’… “ flare up like a flame and make big shadows” .. for true happiness to settle in.

Pema Chodron, Finding Happiness Amongst Uncertainty

photo eugene0126jp

Forgetting ourselves

children playing 2

No despair of ours can alter the reality of things,
or stain the joy of the cosmic dance which is always there.

Indeed we are in the midst of it, and it is in the midst of us,
for it beats in our very blood, whether we want it to or not.

Yet the fact remains that we are invited to forget
ourselves on purpose, cast our awful solemnity to the winds and join in the
general dance.

Thomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation


A simple practice

File:Traffic signal in Italy with red light.jpg

Driving is a daily task in this society. I am not suggesting that you stop driving, just that you do it consciously. While we are driving, we think only about arriving. Therefore, every time that we see a red light, we are not very happy. The red light is a kind on enemy that prevents us from attaining our goal. But we can also see the red light as a bell of mindfulness, reminding us to return to the present moment…. It is easy to transform a feeling of irritation into a pleasant feeling. Although it is the same red light, it becomes different. It becomes a friend, helping us to remember that it is only in the present moment that we can live our lives…

The next time you are caught in a traffic jam, don’t fight it. It’s useless to fight. Sit back and smile to yourself. Enjoy the present moment, breathing and smiling, and make the other people in your car happy. Happiness is there if you know how to breathe and smile, because happiness can always be found in the present moment. Practicing meditation is to go back to the present moment to encounter the flower, the blue sky, the child. Happiness is available.

 Thich Nhat Hanh, Peace is Every Step.

Leaving things alone


The only way out of this struggle is to leave our mind alone, to fully accept the mind that we have, anger, dualisms and all. And when we no longer judge ourselves or try to emotionally neuter ourselves, the internal conflicts and tensions gradually begin to quiet down. We might say this is the most basic psychological insight: I cannot escape myself, so I have to come to terms with the mind that I have.

Barry Magid, Ending the Pursuit of Happiness